Driven by extraordinary customer service.
Amazon is now the second-largest retailer of consumer electronics in the world, behind only Best Buy, according the US industry news site, twice.com.au.
According to TWICE Magazine’s annual Top 100 Consumer Electronics Retailers report, it is less than 17 years since Amazon launched its first online tech store.
In the process, the company has leapfrogged multitudes of mighty electronics merchants like Apple, Target and Sears, and twice.com argues that this helped vanquish others, like Circuit City and Sony Stores.
This time around, Amazon has edged out the world’s largest retailer — Walmart — for the number two spot on the Twice hit parade, relegating the discount chain to third place.
How did Amazon do it?
Twice.com said this was achieved by driving a 28.1% increase in US consumer electronics sales last year, to US$23.1 billion, using a vast arsenal of tools. They include:
- proprietary products like Fire TV streaming media devices, Fire tablets, and Kindle e-readers;
- the US$99/year Amazon Prime membership program, which provides two-day and, increasingly, same-day delivery, and access to millions of songs, books, TV shows and movies, including original content; and
- its hard-to-beat prices and fastidious customer service.
In contrast, Walmart’s electronics sales rose 2.6% last year, to US$22.2 billion, and those of No. 1 tech retailer Best Buy increased 3.8% to US$30.9 billion.
Total sales for the country’s 100 largest electronics retailers, representing three-quarters of all US consumer tech sales, rose 4.3% last year, to US$130 billion, giving Amazon a 17% piece of the Top 100 pie.
Just 10 years ago, twice.com said that the e-tailer ranked 18 on the its charts, behind Newegg.com and the long-since shuttered Tweeter audio/video chain.
During the ensuing decade, Amazon’s electronics sales grew a chart-topping 118%, which must certainly give Best Buy pause as Bezos looms ever larger in its rearview mirror.